Impact Group Receives Award


Local Business Achieves Sales Honour

Minneapolis, MN

Wiley, the leading developer of Everything DiSC® and The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team-based corporate training and assessment-driven solutions, announced today that local business Impact Group was recognized as a 2014 Opal award-winning Partner. The honor of Opal Award is the fifth-highest award level—in 2014, less than 7% of Authorized Partners earned this esteemed award.

“Impact Group’s dedication in bringing the Everything DiSC and The Five Behaviors solutions to their clients has been an inspiration to see,” said Barry Davis, Vice President and General Manager of Wiley’s Workplace Learning Solutions Group. “Their deep product knowledge and excitement to help their clients succeed serves as a model for the professionals we seek to work with. We are excited to continue our partnership with Impact Group and are honored to have them as an Authorized Partner.”

About Impact Group

Impact Group is a business coaching and marketing firm specializing in small businesses. They pride themselves on having the skills within their business to cover all marketing requirements from branding to web design to facilitation and training.

Founded in 2002 by Craig and Cheryl Manness, they have grown into a business of energetic marketing/coaching professionals with a focus on client relationships, intuitive design, and customized training. They work at an in-depth level with their clients to assess their needs, develop solutions, and execute plans to build on their success.

The services they provide are a logical evolution of their client relationships and their specific customer needs. Impact Group is continually talking with clients’ customers to ensure they stay relevant and connected to the markets they serve.

About Everything DiSC

Everything DiSC is the leading suite of DiSC®-based corporate training and assessment solutions. These advanced applications combine online assessment, classroom facilitation, and post-training follow-up to create powerful, personalized workplace development experiences. With a global network of nearly 1,800 independent Partners, Everything DiSC solution-focused products are used in thousands of organizations, including major government agencies and Fortune 500 companies.

About The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team
The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team is the result of the partnership between Wiley Workplace Learning Solutions and best–selling author Patrick Lencioni. The Five Behaviors of a Cohesive Team creates a learning experience that helps individuals and organizations reveal what it takes to build a truly cohesive and effective team in the most approachable, competent, and effective way possible. Powered by Everything DiSC® to bring together everyone’s personalities and preferences, the Five Behaviors guides teams through the hard work and huge payoff of forming a cohesive, productive team.

About Wiley’s Workplace Learning Solutions Community
Wiley’s professional development business creates products and services to help people become more effective in the workplace and achieve career success. We bring the ideas and best practices of thought leaders to life—serving workplace communities worldwide.


Trying something new

Last year, I went snowshoeing for the very first time. I was really excited to go, until a friend of mine (who has gone before) sent me a very long list of all of the items I would need to pack/wear/bring. After reading the list, I got nervous. Maybe snowshoeing wasn’t for me, maybe it was going to be too difficult, maybe it was going to be too cold outside. I came up with all kinds of excuses to cancel my day trip – but in the end, I didn’t.

I decided that it was worth trying something new.

When was the last time I had tried something new? How bad could it be? If I didn’t like it, I would have to go again. And it turned out GREAT. I am so glad that I went. It was beautiful and not nearly as hard as I thought.

Trying something new took courage, forced me to do something outside of my comfort zone, gave me a sense of accomplishment (even if it was small) and opened me up to finding something that I enjoyed doing and would do again.

When is the last time you tried something new?



Yay for the Fitbit!

We have started another step challenge at Impact Group and a few of us have gotten Fitbits to help us through it.

First of all, having a new piece of technology is always motivating in the quest towards fitness. This first time I felt the Fitbit’s triumphant vibration on my wrist telling me that I completed my goal, I felt as though someone, somewhere was watching me and rooting for me to succeed (that is not meant to creep you out). I know that the Fitbit isn’t powered by a person hiding behind a screen, but encouragement from an outside source is always helpful.

Second of all, this particular piece of technology, although it doesn’t work with my lowly iPhone 4, is built with the user in mind. Not only does it inform you of how close you are to your goal with light-up dots on your wrist, it also is accompanied by an app that keeps you updated with everything going on with your body. Awareness is the best thing when trying to be healthy, so seeing the statistics of your day on your phone only helps to provoke you to try to harder.

And there are options for multiple colours!

I’m not one to endorse technology, but I think the Fitbit is a great step for mankind.


Jenny Flaman


If it sounds like I’m preaching at you, it’s because I’m your biggest cheerleader.

In today’s business, it takes the efforts of an entire team to create an environment whereby you develop that positive experience for clients who do business with you. I recently heard a motivating speech from Michael ‘Pinball’ Clemons, a man of unquestionable character and spirit who is renounced for his achievements on the football field. He said,

“A hero lifts other people up”

– I believe that a group of people can only be a team if it comprises heroes. One thing that inspires me at Impact Group is how each person complements one another’s skills and personalities. The team is continually pitching in, offering feedback and encouragement to keep those creative juices flowing, lauding positive achievements as well as giving constructive criticisms, and together scheming new plans and ideas for clients. It’s about being passionate, showing you care, and that you’re driven to stay a step ahead to look after others (clients) needs even before they really know what they want.

Hence my point, if it sounds like I’m preaching at you, it’s because I’m your biggest cheerleader!

Chantelle Andrukow


Get a new coat!

I live in Winnipeg…I can tell your thinking to yourself why? Well because I was born here that’s why! There’s that and also the fact that I actually like it here, yes that’s right I like it. I’ve traveled a lot and lived outside Winnipeg for a short time so I’ve had a taste for other cities and I’m happy to call Winnipeg home.

Let’s talk about the horse in the room right now, Winnipeg winters. That term will put fear in even the warmest of hearts. This year was the coldest December in 120 years and the coldest combined December and January in 64 years. For me though it wasn’t that cold at all. This year, before winter hit, I bought a new coat. It hadn’t occurred to me that I needed a new coat, the 10 year old fall coat that I had was still in working order, or so I thought. My wife was kind enough to point out that maybe it was time to get a new one. OK, so it turns out she was right, my blind attachment to my beloved jacket was keeping me from realizing the obvious, that I live in Winter-peg and needed a winter coat.

So like most men who shop I had purchased a warm new coat in about 45 minutes. Now as the winter progressed and the arctic vortex circled the complaints started rolling in about the terrible weather and how awful things were. I didn’t feel like things were that different than any other winter, ya it was cold out, but it’s always cold in winter. I didn’t dread going outside and even went for some winter walks. It took me a bit of time to realize that even though this was the coldest winter in decades that my new coat had provided me with a perspective I hadn’t had in 10 years. This year by purchasing a new winter coat I armed myself with the right tool to overcome the harsh environment. The lesson I learned was instead of complaining I should ask myself if I’ve done all I can to gain a better perspective. What can you do to improve your outlook on a situation? Maybe all you need is a new coat!

Tim Hobbs Manness


Welcoming Chantelle!

Impact Group is pleased to announce that Chantelle Andrukow has agreed to join our team. Chantelle is a welcome addition and comes with experience in account management, event planning, web design and social media strategies. Chantelle is a graduate of U of A with a Bachelor of Commerce Degree, Marketing Major. She grew up in Viking, Alberta in a retail business so her knowledge and experience of that sector will bring our clients many positive insights. Chantelle will be an Account Manager, and her many talents will have her working on many projects in our business. We are very excited that Chantelle has agreed to join our team.


“Poke The Box” by Seth Godin

In “Poke The Box” Seth Godin goes on another rant, this time about being and initiator and starting things. The whole premise of the book is to step outside of what you are routinely do, and start new things. Be someone that starts and ships things rather than someone that is safe and compliant. Go and make something happen instead of waiting for it to happen to you. While this seems risky and our fear tells us not to, he argues that it is better to walk that line because “except in rare circumstances, failure is not fatal.” He even goes on to suggest that if there isn’t that chance that it might fail it doesn’t count as trying to make something happen because there is no consequence. I have to admit that reading this book inspires me to want to go and start something but I don’t really know where to start. And that is partially his point. “The challenge is getting in the habit of starting.” Godin means intentionally starting something, anything, big or small. Get in the habit of starting. Pick a day and a time, sit down, and start something. I think we are waiting for someone to give us permission to put ourselves out there but I find that the biggest barrier is myself. The question I found myself asking is, what would happen if I gave myself permission to start something knowing that it might fail. Obviously the severity of the consequences plays a factor in the decision but Godin says that it is worth it to be in the habit of starting. That it pays off in the long run. That it is an exciting and fulfilling way to live. It is exciting fun to work with people that do this.

Here are a few quotes from the book that struck me.

“The challenge is getting into the habit of starting.”

Starting things isn’t something I am either born with or without. Starting things is an intentional decision and gets easier and more natural the more I do it.

“When in doubt, look for the fear. That is almost always the source of your doubt.”

Looking for the fear that drives my doubt is an interesting exercise. Thinking back to when I have let fear stop me from doing something I realized that it usually meant that nothing would happen. Some might say that is good but it also means no good is happening either. Am I missing out on really cool awesome stuff because of my fear? Are others missing out on something amazing because of my fear?

“Organize (your company) for joy. These are the companies that give people the freedom (and the expectation) that they will create, connect, and surprise. The relentless act of invention and innovation is the best marketing asset.”

Not much to add except that I want that for Impact Group and the clients we work with.

“If you can’t fail, it doesn’t count.”

If there is no risk of failing then it doesn’t count as starting something. There needs to be skin in the game.

“Ideas that spread win, but ideas that don’t get spoken always fail.”

Waiting for something to happen or someone to notice without speaking up will mean my ideas will fail. I need to overcome the fear of my ideas being good or bad and just let them be ideas and share them. Ideas good or bad when shared always lead to more good ideas in the end. At least that has been my experience to date.

“Don’t wait for someone to pick you.”

I read this to mean pick yourself. Don’t wait to be discovered, discover yourself and put yourself out there. Embrace the failures. Celebrate the successes. Start something else.

As always, I try to take Godins rants with a grain of salt. He writes to the extreme to make his point and I appreciate that. Message received. It’s worth a shot, at least it will be exciting. Overall, enjoyed the book. It was a quick read and some good food for thought and hopefully some action.

Go, make something happen!


Stampede Breakfast 2013

Impact Group (@impactgr) and Intoria (@intoria) pooled their pancake batter and breakfast sausages and threw a pancake breakfast this morning. Thanks to everyone who came! Yahoo!!!!!!!!



Monsanto investment in Corn in Western Canada

Last week, Monsanto announced it would invest $10,000,000 per year over the next 10 years into corn breeding and product development. Although it is as surprising announcement for some it makes sense for the following reasons:
Western Canada has proven itself as a remarkable farming region. Considering the vast amount of acres, western Canada farmers can seed 2,000,000 acres in a day (a big day, and by the way, I have absolutely no proof of this) as made evident this spring where the crop, in large part was seeded in 20 days. Therefore when the pressure is on to get in early seeded crops it can happen fast.
Corn is following soybeans and they go together. The soybean business is moving and it isn’t going to stop. Earlier maturing bean varieties are coming every year and we are seeing beans grown as far north as Saskatoon and they are looking good.
Canola, the CInderella crop, is hitting a wall. The notion that canola is a 20,000,000 acre crop in Western Canada is agronomically wrong and most people know it in their hearts and minds even if they won’t say it. Yields aren’t consistently good enough when farmers push rotations of canola with pulse crops and they will be willing to embrace new cash generating crops that can spread the rotation out. They have to. Corn and soybeans fit that need. And remember, soybeans are not a pulse crop. They are an oilseed.
If corn hits 8 million acres buy 2025, like Monsanto says, then soybeans will be at at least 4 million and canola will rest at around 12 – 15 million. And we’ll all live happily ever after. (Well,,maybe)
I’ll bet Monsanto isn’t investing $10,000,000 for ten years in canola or wheat breeding.


If living in the Red River Valley taught me one thing…

We thought we bought high. If growing up the Red River Valley taught me one thing, it was that if I ever buy a home, buy on high ground. So when we bought a home in Calgary 20 years ago that was a main criteria. We bought in a community called Riverbend, but it had never flooded in the history of the city. We were a 1/4 mile from the river and many feet higher than the banks so I was confident water, at least too much of it, would be a problem for us.
Turns out that it wasn’t but we sure got a scare, as Cheryl tells about in her blog below. What struck me was how small we are when Mother Nature chooses to move. On the Thursday we were told to leave our home I felt incredibly helpless.
Other than some inconvenience, we escaped unscathed. But so many in this province have had their lives change dramatically. Homes that would have sold for hundreds of thousand of dollars a few weeks ago risk being condemned. Trailer parks that resemble refugee camps are being erected to hose people for what may well be a year. A senior home is residing in college and can stay as long as they need to. Its crazy.